February 17th, 2012
12:09 PM ET

AC360- Syria Tries To Whitewash Its War

Despite videos and eyewitness reports, Syria’s ambassador to the UN says there’s no armed conflict happening in his country.  Last night on Anderson Cooper 360°, Arwa Damon – who is in Syria, reports a very different story from Homs.

Topics: Anderson Cooper • Syria
February 17th, 2012
11:15 AM ET

Greenstein: Sen. Toomey (R-PA) plan raises taxes for those making less than $200K

On Tuesday’s Starting Point, Rep. Pat Toomey (R-PA) told CNN anchor Soledad O’Brien that it is “factually wrong and ridiculous” to say that his budget would raise taxes for those making less than $200K. Today, Robert Greenstein with the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities refutes Sen. Pat Toomey's (R-PA) claim.

Greenstein says, “I think Senator Toomey is very sincere in not wanting to raise taxes for people below 200. I think he is, indeed, unaware that that is the effect that his plan would have and has to have. The math is very simple, Soledad. Under his plan by lowering the top rate to 28 percent for people at the top, it is a huge tax cut at the top. The Urban Institute Brookings Tax Policy Center estimates somewhere in the vicinity of $140 billion a year. If you leave the capital gains rate at 15 percent, all of the studies of plans like Senator Toomey's show that you can't raise - you don't raise enough money from limiting things like the mortgage interest deduction or the child credit on people at the top to make up for the big tax cut you're giving them by lowering the top rate to 28 percent."

He continues, “And the math is irrefutable here. If you bring in the same amount of revenue overall and you cut taxes for people over 200, then you have to raise them for people under 200. And again, Congress's official score keeper, the Joint Committee on Taxation, analyzed a plan similar to Toomey's and found it would cut taxes for people over 200, it would raise taxes for people under 200.”

Starting Point with Soledad O’Brien airs week mornings from 7-9am ET on CNN.

Topics: CNN • CNN Politics • Soledad O'Brien • Starting Point
The "CNN Grill" Returns to South by Southwest®
February 17th, 2012
10:41 AM ET

The "CNN Grill" Returns to South by Southwest®

MAX's Wine Dive will transform into CNN's Event & Broadcast Hub

We're back! CNN will descend on Austin, TX from March 9-12, for this year's South by Southwest (SXSW) Conferences and Festival. After making its debut in 2011, the network's "CNN Grill" will once again hold court at MAX's Wine Dive, Austin's downtown hotspot known for gourmet comfort food and competitively priced wines from around the world.

Situated just steps from the Austin Convention Center, the CNN Grill will bring together select SXSW attendees, newsmakers and members of the media for live CNN programming, musical performances and special events daily. Union Square Events, the event services business of Danny Meyer’s Union Square Hospitality Group, will create a special CNN Grill Menu that will be served throughout the event. Guests will also enjoy handcrafted cocktails, incredible wines and great entertainment exclusive to the CNN Grill.

[cnn-video url="http://cnn.com/video/?/video/bestoftv/2012/02/03/exp-cnn-grill-at-south-by-southwest-2011.cnn"%5D

For the latest news about what's happening at the CNN Grill and SXSW, follow @cnnsxsw on Twitter (detailed schedule to be announced).

Topics: CNN Digital • SXSW
February 17th, 2012
09:26 AM ET

Soledad O'Brien asks Santorum rep. about polling gender gap and contraception stance

CNN anchor Soledad O'Brien interviews Rick Santorum campaign Press Secretary Alice Stewart about his stance on contraception and if there is a correlation to lower polling numbers among Republican women.

Stewart says, "It's one of the many issues that Rick Santorum stands firm on.... He doesn't support contraception.... Personally, his faith is opposed to it. Politically, he has not stood in the way of contraception."

O'Brien asks, "Do you think that stance is hurting him among Republican women when we see in polls that he is nine points beyond Mitt Romney...?"

Stewart answers, "He has a lot of faith and confidence in women.... He is a strong supporter of women, working women, single mothers, and so any claim that he doesn't support women in the workplace are certainly unfounded.

O'Brien says, "You know I certainly did not say that. I was just asking you to explain to me the gender gap. I'm not really sure we got an answer on that."

Starting Point with Soledad O'Brien airs week mornings from 7-9a ET on CNN.

Topics: CNN • CNN Politics • Soledad O'Brien • Starting Point